What Is the Average Pay for a Computer Programming Masters Degree?

Mar 03, 2020

The average salary for individuals with computer programming-related master's degrees vary by degree and job title. Relevant master's degrees are available in both software engineering and computer science, both of which cover topics in computer programming.

Salary Ranges for People with Computer-related Master's Degrees

Master's Degree in Software Engineering Salary

According to Payscale.com data from February 2020, the average salary for individuals who hold a master's degree in software engineering ranges from $56,895 to $138,828.

Master's Degree in Computer Science Salary

Payscale.com also provides salary information for individuals who hold a master's degree in computer science, based on data from February 2020. For these professionals, salary varies widely, depending on job title:

  • Software engineers earn an average of $94,634.
  • Senior software engineers earn an average of $120,052.
  • Software developers earn an average of $79,861.
  • The average salary for senior software engineers/developers/programmers is $112,155.
  • For senior software architects, the average annual salary is $135,160.
  • Principal software engineers make $141,925 per year.
  • Software development engineers make an average of $110,813.

Master's Degree Programs

Individuals who want to study computer programming typically earn a master's degree in either computer science of software engineering:

Master's Degree in Computer Science

A master's degree program in computer science teaches students computer theory, algorithms and programming, and it provides students with a comprehensive foundation to further grow and adapt to new technologies. Computer scientists design software and develop solutions to computing problems. They may take many computer programming-related courses, including:

  • Java programming
  • C programming
  • C++ programming
  • Swift programming
  • Functional programming

Master's Degree in Software Engineering

Software engineers design and maintain software programs and systems, such as network control systems, operating systems, business applications and computer games. Master's degree programs in software engineering have many courses in common with computer science programs; however, software engineering programs focus more heavily on software development, reliability and maintenance. Some of the programming-related courses they might take cover topics like:

  • Writing fast code
  • Evolutionary algorithms
  • Applied stochastic processes
  • Software verification and testing

By earning a master's degree in computer science or software engineering, individuals can gain the computer programming skills they need for jobs that have a variety of different salaries.

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